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FAQs

What are the Johnson Matthey Base Prices?

The Johnson Matthey Base Prices are the company’s quoted prices for our customers of wholesale quantities of platinum group metals set by our trading desks in the USA, Hong Kong and the UK. The price reflects Johnson Matthey’s current view of prevailing market prices and may consider Johnson Matthey’s view on current market bids and offers. Read our disclaimer for more information.

What is a troy ounce?

The troy ounce (troy oz) is the unit of weight traditionally used for precious metals such as platinum. It differs from the more common ounce (oz) used in the UK and US, being slightly heavier.

1 troy ounce = 1.097 oz = 0.0311 kilograms

32.1507 troy oz = 1 kilogram

The troy system of weight is named after the city of Troyes in France, and was widely used in Europe during the Middle Ages. It stopped being commonly used when other systems began to be preferred, continuing only in the specialised fields of precious metals, gems and medicines, up to the nineteenth century. Today it is only used for the trading of precious metals and gemstones.

What is the sponge form of platinum group metals?

Sponge is a powdered form of a Platinum Group Metal (PGM). Commonly, sponge is the form required for manufacture of many PGM-based chemicals and catalysts, and our Base Prices relate to PGM in sponge form.

I have heard that some counterfeit Johnson Matthey platinum bars are in circulation, is this true?

We are aware that over a number of years there have been numerous apparently fraudulent offerings of large quantities of platinum bars in various styles - in particular bars supposedly manufactured by Johnson Matthey The common thread has generally been the "horseshoe" mark and AZL18. It is impossible to accurately estimate the number of these bars in circulation. However, the quantities offered are often out of proportion to the amount of platinum that could possibly be in existence. Commonly they have been for tens, hundreds or even thousands of tonnes. Mostly the offers are routed through small traders and individuals unfamiliar with precious metals or platinum. Forged certificates, mostly of a poor and amateurish nature, have been provided and a variety of different methods and forms of contracts have been proposed attempting to arrange a "deal". Whenever we have physically examined of this type of bar they have always been manufactured of base metal, typically a high grade stainless steel.

How do I begin a trading relationship with Johnson Matthey?

Precious metal trading accounts are only available to organisations with a genuine manufacturing requirement for precious metals. Accounts are subject to KYC checks and credit status. We do not create precious metal accounts for speculative trading purposes and accounts are not available to individuls or members of the general public.

What is the London auction price?

The London Metal Exchange (LME) administers the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) platinum and palladium prices. These prices are set twice daily; the first at 09:45 (am price) and the second at 14:00 (pm price) London time. These prices are published benchmarks. The auction price is a bid price for good delivery ingot or plate, located in vaults in London or Switzerland. Hence it is the price which auction members would be prepared to pay for platinum and palladium in the form of plate or ingot deposited in a London or Swiss vault. Customers can instruct dealers to buy or sell metal at the auction price but they will incur charges for brokerage, conversion and transportation. Customers do not have the benefit of knowing what the price is before they buy or sell.

What is platinum week?

During the third week in May each year, representatives of the platinum industry gather in London, England for what has become known as platinum week. London is a historically significant trading centre for PGMs - where many of its properties and technical applications were first developed. Platinum week centres on an industry dinner sponsored by the London Platinum & Palladium Market (LPPM), which marks the anniversary of the inauguration of the London Platinum Quotation (the forerunner of the present London Fixings) in 1973. This event is by invitation only to members of the LPPM and is attended by PGM producers, refiners, fabricators, and traders. The first major event of platinum week is our ‘PGM Market Report’ launch, where a summary of the report is presented to an audience of Johnson Matthey customers, suppliers and partners. The report is then openly available on our website in English and Mandarin.

How many times a day do the Johnson Matthey Base Prices change?

The Johnson Matthey Base Price is currently set 4 times a day from Monday to Friday

  • For Asia: at 08:30 and 14:30 Hong Kong time
  • For Europe: at 09:00 London time
  • For US: at 09:30 Eastern Standard Time

If markets move sharply higher or lower between these times, prices may be adjusted accordingly. Our Base Prices are also published in Platt's Metals Week, Metal Bulletin and American Metals Market.

How can I check that an item is made of platinum?

We recommend that you always purchase platinum products from a reputable source and that you always verify hallmarks and serial numbers wherever possible. A quick and very approximate test you can perform to check a platinum bar is genuine is to measure the three dimensions in centimetres and multiply these together to give the volume. Multiply this volume by the density of platinum, 21.45 g/cm3 to give you the theoretical weight. If the actual weight is less than 85% of theoretical it is probably not platinum.

Can I use price charts and data from platinum.matthey.com in another publication?

Yes, with the exception of Base Prices, our information is available to use for free providing it appears in context and Johnson Matthey is clearly acknowledged as the source. JM's Base Prices may not be reproduced without our expressed written consent.

Is Johnson Matthey a member of the London Platinum & Palladium Market?

Yes, Johnson Matthey Plc is a full and founder Member of the London Platinum & Palladium Market (LPPM).

Can I receive price information and reports via email?

We send a daily PGM update with our latest Base Prices, a trading update and current spot prices – you can sign up to receive this by emailing tradinguk@matthey.com.

How are the average monthly prices calculated?

Johnson Matthey lists two types of average at the bottom of each month's table of PGM prices.

"Month Average" is the average of the prices in each column and therefore provides an average price for each of the five metals in each time zones.

"Month Average for all time zones" is calculated by adding together all the daily prices set during the month for all time zones, then dividing it by the number of times prices were set during the month for all time zones. Please note that in times of high volatility more than four prices may be set per day and this average will include interim prices as well as those listed.